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ERIC Number: ED562730
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 10
Estimating the Impact of the PROMISE Scholarship Using Propensity Score Weighted Frontier Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design
Shobo, Yetty; Wong, Jen D.; Bell, Angie
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
Regression discontinuity (RD), an "as good as randomized," research design is increasingly prominent in education research in recent years; the design gets eligible quasi-experimental designs as close as possible to experimental designs by using a stated threshold on a continuous baseline variable to assign individuals to a "treatment". Fuzzy RD in which the threshold does not perfectly predict treatment receipt is a subset of this increasingly popular design. In higher education, RD design is increasingly prominent in estimating the impact of merit-based aids on enrollment, school completion, grade point average (GPA), and other key outcomes. Merit-based aids are increasingly allocated based on individuals meeting multiple academic proficiency criteria. A careful examination of merit-based scholarship is particularly critical in West Virginia, a state with the lowest percent of adults 25 and older who have a Bachelor's degree (US Census, 2006). Started in 2002, the West Virginia PROMISE grant aimed to "improve high school and post secondary academic achievement through scholarship incentives" and "promote access to higher education by reducing cost to students." Originally, the grant provided full tuition for attending public colleges (equivalent amount was provided for students in in-state not-for-profit private colleges) but it now provides a maximum of $4750 towards tuition. Academic eligibility to receive and continue receiving the four-year maximum grant is increasingly stringent. The present study utilizes propensity scoring technique in a frontier RD design to estimate the effects of West Virginia's (WV) PROMISE on the quantity (4- and 5-year graduate rates, sum of credits earned) and quality (cumulative GPA) of long-term college indicators. The study examines the effects of receiving West Virginia's PROMISE scholarship for in-state students attending four-year public institutions. The present study uses fuzzy and frontier RD designs because PROMISE receipt is not perfect above the threshold and is based on multiple criteria. Administrative data was obtained from West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (WVHEPC). This study demonstrates the significant potential that the frontier RD and the propensity score weighting techniques hold for education research. Tables and figures are appended.
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. 2040 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208. Tel: 202-495-0920; Fax: 202-640-4401; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)
Identifiers - Location: West Virginia